UnionAID

South Asia

Amirul Haque, General Secretary of the NGWF delivery emergency relief to union members during the Covid-19 pandemic

Crisis support for Bangladeshi garment workers’ union

With UnionAID’s support, the National Garment Workers Federation (NGWF) of Bangladesh had been increasing union membership and strengthening collective bargaining when the pandemic hit.  Nearly 5,000 new members were recruited in 2019. Now the union needs help to sustain its organsation and defend garment workers’ rights as membership drops and workers face long-term hardship. NGWF …

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Dalit Workers Gaining Freedom

Since 2011 the focus of our work in India with the Tamil Nadu Labour Union (TNLU) has been on establishing co-operatives with Dalit and Tribal workers so they can gain independence from money lenders and middlemen that have kept them trapped in a cycle of poverty. Over 2,175 men and women have joined these small …

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Lockdown in Tamil Nadu Pushing Informal Workers to the Edge

The vulnerability of India’s 450 million informal workers has been exposed as the nation entered a 21-day lockdown in March. These men and women rely on their day-to-day earnings to support their families with little opportunity to save and no government welfare to support them. For these working people a 21-day lockdown presents them with …

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Eight women sit on a stage holding certificates presented by the UN-ESCAP

Manohari Doss’ Leadership Recognised

Manohari Doss, leader of the Tamil Nadu Labour Union (TNLU), has been recognised as one of seventeen transformative Asia Pacific women leaders at the UN – ESCAP, Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference, in Bangkok this November. She was invited to speak as a panellist at the launch of the report “Pathways to Influence: Promoting the Role …

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Two boys practice their spelling on a small chalkboard

Children’s voices inform education policy

At a unique workshop organised by TNLU recently for both children and their teachers, children from the evening education centres were asked about their likes and dislikes. They identified their top likes as grandparents, parents, and family members; to be loved, cared for, and shown affection; and to play games, dance and act – like …

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A man hammers a large bowl, he is surrounded by stacks of large metal bowls.

Utensil Workers Cooperative Improving Safety

In the stifling heat and noise, utensil makers in Madurai spend long days hammering designs onto pots. Many of these men have done this work for decades and risk accumulated hearing loss, respiratory problems and other injuries. But things are changing for the better. Since forming a co-operative this year they have made significant improvements …

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